Buffalo Bill Blog


Full Family Season Is Upon Us


The 2013 Cody Stampede is now a fond memory. I should have kept some sort of journal of how many old friends I saw and new ones I made – hmm, maybe I could invent some sort of electronic contraption that will allow me to take photos, record addresses and phone numbers, organize these friends into one big group and then tell everyone details of my life such as what I am having for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

sticker reading Wyoming's Great American Road TripBut I digress. With the Stampede complete, we are in full summer season, and that means family time. I understand that many people like to travel during what is called the “shoulder seasons” when the weather is nice and the atmosphere a little more relaxed, but as long as kids are in school from early September through early June, families will make the Great American Road Trip in the summer.

Personally, I love it. With the obvious exception of Sleeping Giant ski area, all of our activities and attractions are going full force and you can feel the energy on our streets.

While many of the visitors stop in Cody for one night on their way to or from Yellowstone Park, I have seen an increase in those who make a point of staying a few days because there is just so much to do. People are surprised that our small town offers such a diverse lineup of activities. miniature carvings of tepees, mountains, trees, indians

You want history? Check out the The Buffalo Bill Center of the West and its five museums under one roof. Tecumseh’s Miniature Village tells the story of the West and has incredible artifacts. Old Trail Town’s cabins are simply incredible. For a sobering look at life for Japanese Americans during World War II, do not miss Heart Mountain Interpretive Center.

family floating on raft down riverLooking for something active? Shoot the rapids on the North Fork of the Shoshone River, catch trout on one of the many rivers in the area or hike and ride the trails surrounding our many guest ranches.

Or hire a guide and do some fantastic mountain biking!Cody rodeo arena

Want to be entertained? The Cody Gunfighters always put on a good show while getting across the message about gun safety. There’s plenty of good music suitable for the whole family at a chuck wagon dinner or afterwards with Dan Miller. And, of course, the Nite Rodeo is a great way to end the day.campground with tents

Need a place to stay? We offer something for everyone with camp sites, RV sites, cabins, motels, hotels, B&Bs within walking distance and guest ranches outside of town.

We are tremendously proud of what our little area has to offer. I get the biggest kick out of eavesdropping on families as they look at their schedules to see if they can add a day or two to their Cody portion.

I tell you, we are no One-Trick Pony.

Lovin’ life and sum, sum, summertime in Cody, Wyoming.

                                                                                    Corrie N. Codycartoon cowgirl with braids


Buffalo Bill Presents Our Flag To The Queen


American flag blowing in the wind

With July 4th almost here, I think about what our flag means to me as a symbol of freedom and the joining of the many diverse regions of our country into a single entity that is so much stronger than our individual parts.

I also think about how that flag and our very own Buffalo Bill Cody were instrumental in solidifying our relationship with England.

Many people know that Buffalo Bill was the most famous person in the world at one time. His Wild West Show was incredibly popular as it toured the U.S. and later went international. In 1887, Bill took his show to Europe where it was a smash success seen by more than one million people.

Among those attending the show was the very proper Queen Victoria. Many of the English people were more than a little surprised that the queen chose to attend the show, and this step only served to increase interest. What happened at the show is even better.

At the beginning of each show, Buffalo Bill entered with the American flag. On this day he rode into the arena and over to the queen to present himself and the flag. Queen Victoria stood and bowed to our flag and to Bill.

We here in town believe that this gesture alone began to thaw some frosty relations between the U.S. and England that had been lingering for decades, especially since the War of 1812. Today, we know no greater ally than England.

Queen Victoria and Buffalo Bill Cody developed mutual respect and a friendship. The queen even shipped the beautiful cherry wood bar that continues to grace the dining room of the Irma Hotel. I think of this story every time I see that bar.

I hope your Independence Day is filled with laughter, the company of good friends, family and relaxation. Mine will include all of that. Plus a toast to Queen Victoria.

Loving the independent life in Buffalo Bill’s Cody Country…

Corrie N. Codycartoon cowgirl with braids


The Cody Stampede Is A Week Away!


sign reading cody stampedeWith the Cody Stampede just a week away I am shifting my efforts to find a date for the July 4th holiday into a higher gear.photo of dan miller

I had my sights set on nine-time world rodeo champion Ty Murray, but someone told me he is married to a singer. And I do respect the institution of marriage. Otherwise, I would just head over the Cody Theatre and tell Dan Miller what time to pick me up.

The Cody Stampede is special even in our rodeo-centric town. This year’s events will be held for four days July 1-4 and will attract the top cowboys in the world. I tried to legally change my name to “Cody Stampede” but the judge would not allow it. He didn’t accept my argument that I, too, attracted cowboys.

marching band in paradeIn addition to the bull riding, roping and such, we have the stampede parade. Actually, that’s two parades. On July 2 at 10 a.m., the Kiddies Parade gets underway. In addition to being in the parade just for the fun of it, the kids compete in various categories such as “Most Patriotic,” “Best Decorated Float” and several others. At 9:30 a.m. on July 3 and 4, the main Stampede Parade gets underway with more participants, prizes and floats. This year’s theme is Cowboys, Indians & Thieves. I love our July 4th parade – lots horses, marching bands from all over, mountain men and clever floats.

The Grand Marshal of this year’s parade will be Craig Johnson, author of the popular “Walt Longmire” books. If you have not read one of the books, you might have seen the television show.

And my favorite rodeo event? Like many people, I love the bull riding. The PRCA Xtreme Bulls Tour will feature top riders competing for a $50,000 purse and the Cody-Yellowstone Xtreme Bulls title. You can bet I’ll be man riding bullthere – hopefully with a date, at 7 p.m. on June 30th for the 2013 event – a great kickoff to the Cody Stampede week.  Considering the best riders stay on the bulls less than 10 seconds, the winner makes quite the hourly wage. If you have ever seen those bulls up close, you know the riders earn every cent.

Here’s hoping I see you there.

Loving life – and rodeo – in Cody, Wyoming.

Corrie N. Codycartoon cowgirl with braids


When I Have Company


Few things in life are certain, but I can practically guarantee this: If you live in Cody/Yellowstone Country you will have company at some point, most likely in the summer. And if your friends and relatives are anything like mine, they are curious about what makes the town and surrounding area tick.

I have developed a surefire way to answer most of the questions these folks have and to make their visit so much better by helping them understand what they are seeing.

Here’s my three-step process.

looking at map on floor from stairs above1.  I take my guests over to the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and we make a hard left straight to the Draper Natural History Museum. We walk over to the edge of the top level and look down at a big tile floor map of the region. By starting big, we get our bearings and see where Cody, Park County, the Park and the whole Yellowstone ecosystem fit together.

We then head down the ramps and begin to learn about some more specific topics like the area’s wildlife, how forest fires are actually good for the environment and the reintroduction of wolves to the area. stuffed wolf inside museum

Then we spend some more time exploring the other four museums under the Buffalo Bill Center of the West roof. My visitors always want to learn about Buffalo Bill Cody, and the Buffalo Bill Museum does a terrific job of presenting his life and adventures. There’s also the Plains Indians Museum, Whitney Museum of Western Art and Cody Firearms Museum. My visitors are always amazed that we have such a world-class museum in our little town.

red and green Cody Trolley2.  Next, we head over to the Cody Trolley Tour for a one-hour, 22-mile tour that is a great way to get acquainted with the town. Lively narrators tell the compelling story of William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody and showcase the town he created.

We learn about the town as it was more than 100 years ago, how the dam changed agriculture in the region, what it took to drill tunnels and create the road to Yellowstone and more.

My favorite part of the tour is when they point out the houses people ordered through the Sears catalog.

3.  At this point I am pretty confident that my visitors have a broad understanding of our slice of Heaven and why this whole region is so special. Our next step is to pick out specific things to do and see. Some people buildings with flag flying want to head straight to the park looking for grizzly bears; others are more interested in human history and can’t wait to get to the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center and others want to hike into a lodge pole pine forest that burned 25 years ago and is growing back with a vengeance.

Me? I think I will head back over to the Draper Museum.

Until next time, I lovin’ life and playing tour guide in Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country…

                                     Corrie N. Codycartoon cowgirl wtih braids


Cody Western Furniture


It’s going to be a big week for me in Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country with some serious decision-making going on.

That’s because I am going shopping for furniture, and I am not talking about your basic sofas, loveseats, chairs, ottomans and recliners.

western furnitureNo, I like to buy my furniture one or two pieces at a time from one of many fine artists in town. You probably didn’t know that our little town has attracted some of the finest builders and designers of Western furniture and accessories.

This is not something that happened overnight, and we can trace Cody’s roots as a center for Western furniture back to the 1930s to our most famous designer and builder – Thomas Molesworth, owner of the Shoshone Furniture Company. Molesworth combined the basic furniture designs that local cowboys used in ranch houses throughout the area with elements such as leather, horsehide, elk antlers, Native American weavings, brass tacks and more.

After building furniture for us locals, Molesworth’s work became known by Easterners, many of whom traveled to Western dude ranches and Yellowstone National Park. He subsequently receivedWestern chair built by Thomas Molesworth commissions to design and build tables, chairs, couches and other furniture for homes across the country. In the process he became the best-known designer and builder of furniture in the Western genre.

In 1989 the Buffalo Bill Center of the West (then known as the Buffalo Bill Historical Center) held an exhibition called “Interior West: The Craft and Style of Thomas Molesworth.” This exhibition sparked a renewed interest and helped to attract builders and marked a resurgence of Western design, particularly among furniture builders.

wooden table with wooden bowls on topSince that spark almost 25 years ago, furniture builders have opened shops, trained apprentices and taken traditional techniques and designs to a new level. We now feature approximately two dozen artisans creating unusual furniture in both traditional and modern Western motifs. Their wares are available in the town’s galleries and directly at many of the artists’ shops or through their web sites. Most artists are happy to provide tours, and most have showrooms.

Much of the distinct design comes from the fact that the original ranchers often had limited materials with which to work. The original Molesworth chairs often featured branches from lodge pole pine trees that developed those big knobs, and he incorporated them into the design. The hides from cattle were used for upholstery, and Rocky Mountain junipers added wood grains you could spot a mile away. And then there are the antler specialists who use elk, deer and moose antlers to create those spectacular chandeliers, lamps and more.

The question is: Do I go for the coffee table with the antler legs or the jewelry box trimmed in leather and brass tacks?

Until next time, I’ll be shopping for that special furniture piece in Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country!

Corrie N. Cody

cartoon cowgirl with braids

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